Taylor Swift has written an open letter to Apple explaining her refusal to be part of the new Apple Music streaming service and lambasting it for refusing to pay writers, producers or artists.
The “Shake It Off” singer is withholding her latest album, 1989, which has not been released to any streaming services, but her back catalogue will be part of the Apple tech giant's impending music platform.
Writing on Tumblr she says: “I’m sure you’re aware that Apple Music will be offering a free 3 month trial to anyone who signs up for the service. I’m not sure you know that Apple Music will not be paying writers, producers or artists for those three months.”
Swift declares herself “shocked” and “disappointed” at Apple which she describes as one her “best partners in selling music”. She says she is speaking out on behalf of new artists who will not be paid for those initial months.
“These are not the complaints of a spoiled, petulant child,” she continues. “These are the echoed sentiments of every artist, writer and producer in my social circles who are afraid to speak up publicly because we admire and respect Apple so much.”
She ends her letter by calling on Apple to change their minds: “Please don’t ask us to provide you with our music for no compensation.”
Last year Swift hit headlines when she pulled her entire back catalogue from music streaming service Spotify while she was promoting new album 1989, which sold 1.287 million copies in its first week.
Musicians against Spotify
Musicians against Spotify
1/10 Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift does not what her work to be used as an 'experiment' by Spotify and believes that artists are treated unfairly. She withdrew her entire catalogue in November 2014.
2/10 Thom Yorke
The Radiohead frontman famously described Spotify as 'the last desperate fart of a dying corpse' in October 2013.
3/10 David Byrne
David Byrne of Talking Heads wrote about not understanding Spotify's claim of discovery in a Guardian op-ed. 'The inevitable result would seem to be that the internet will suck the creative content out of the whole world until nothing is left,' he said.
Beck dismissed the Spotify model as 'not working' because of how little it pays musicians. He added that the 'saddest thing' about streaming is the poor sound quality - 'It's like watching Citizen Kane on your phone'.
5/10 The Black Keys
Dan Auerbach has described Spotify's payment to artists as 'so minuscule it's laughable'. 'If you are a bigger band that's already known and you rely on record sales for a living then it's really no place to be,' he said.
6/10 Atoms for Peace
Thom Yorke's other band refused to let Spotify stream their songs. Nigel Godrich from the group described the service as 'an equation that just doesn't work'. 'Small labels and new artists can't even keep their lights on. It's just not right,' he said.
7/10 Yannis Philippakis
The Foals singer said he would rather that somebody stole his record on vinyl than bought it or streamed it on Spotify. He described using Spotify as like going to a top class restaurant and leaving only coppers without paying the bill.
8/10 Aimee Mann
The US singer-songwriter has not put her music on Spotify because she does not think artists make a fair amount of money from the streaming service.
9/10 Grizzly Bear
The band tweeted in 2012 that Spotify provides a great service for people but does as much to help bands as 'downloading from Limewire'.
10/10 Jason Isbell
Jason Isbell of Drive-By Truckers has used the single word 'evil' to describe Spotify.
The 25-year-old said at the time that "valuable things should be paid for", arguing that "music should not be free" and artists should not "underestimate themselves or undervalue their art".
"I felt like I was saying to my fans, 'If you create music someday, if you create a painting someday, someone can just walk into a museum, take it off the wall, rip off a corner off it and it's theirs now and they don't have to pay for it," she said.
"I didn't like the perception that it was putting forth and so I decided to change the way I was doing things."
Spotify subsequently begged Swift to return with a "we love you" playlist and insisted that nearly 70 per cent of its revenue goes back to the music community.
Swift's popular repertoire can be found on Jay Z's artist-owned Tidal service as well as other subscription services Beats Music, Google Play Music and Rhapsody.Reuse content